Microsoft to acquire Epic?

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This is the latest rumour to be doing the rounds at GDC this year, now that Bungie has run off and left Microsoft with no killer titles it is logical to think that Microsoft may be looking for a new friend.

And who better to approach than Epic, the guys who made the hugely successful Gears of War and Unreal Tournament titles. Well the first response is to think that there is no reason for Epic to join Microsoft and then you hear that Microsoft may be offering $1 billion… that is a huge chunk of change that could sway hearts, minds and wallets of the Epic owners.

So is it going to happen? I highly doubt it but I do expect Microsoft and Epic to announce a new killer 360 exclusive soon enough, and it isn’t going to be Gears of War 2.

Source: Wral.com

Last Updated: February 19, 2008

Gavin Mannion

I for one welcome our future robotic overlords

  • Naudran

    Don’t think it’ll happen. Epic is already quite big enough by themselves.

  • JimBob

    It would be messy. Would Microsoft really want to own an engine used on other consoles, which is probably where most of the value in Epic lies these days? Would Sony (or Nintendo) want Microsoft creating programming tools for its consoles, with all that implies like early access to hardware and development kits?

    Besides that, I think Microsoft is stepping away from owning studios to financing and publishing third party exclusives, an approach that has worked well with games like GoW and Mass Effect. They probably could’ve bid successfully for Bizarre or Bioware, but I really think they chose not to.

    I think the reason for this is that Rare was a disappinting buy, and they’ve realised that it’s difficult to hold on to the creative visionaries and the internal culture that make a great development studio successful. (The jury’s still out on Lionhead – maybe that will be a better buy).

  • Fox1

    This sounds sweet. Take a look at the sales of the premier Epic games available on the 360 and PS3 according to http://www.vgchartz.com:
    Gears of War(Xbox360): 4.97m
    Unreal 3(PS3): 0.22m

    In the words of Marcus Fenix: “We are not here to sell cookies!” 😉

  • JimBob

    Unreal Engine 3, licensed for well over 50 games at up to $700,000 a pop, is Epic’s bread and butter these days. It’s games are essentially jam money and showcases for the engine.

  • Fox1

    Epic stands to make more profit per MS game than a PS3 game.

    vgchartz.com:
    Bioshock(Xbox360): 1.54M

  • doobiwan

    *Shock horror*

    I agree JimBob 😉

    Microsofts strategy is to rather buy exclusive games rather than studio’s these days. Epic is a little bit of a special case because of Gears, but I think they’re both quite happy with the relationship as id.

    I think the only time Microsoft would consider buying Wpic would be if there was another detrimental offer on the table. For example if Sony offered to buy them first.

    As far as Lionhead goes, they’d done very well for them! Fable 1 was one of the best selling Xbox 1 games and earned multiple GoTY awards. Rare I think while not delivering a blockbuster has delivered some very important and not unsuccessful games – 2 launch titles and a desparately needed “kids” game, with 2 more due this year. That’s pretty good output.

  • Fox1

    “It’s games are essentially jam money and showcases for the engine.”

    No JimBob. Gears of War raked in so much of cash that that dude from Epic bought a Gallardo. Lazy reported it a few weeks back i think.

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